Permaculture Principle OBSERVE AND INTERACT : fruitful and hard lesson at PerrineKope farm

image of Observe and interact learnt at PerrineKope Farm/ l'apprentissage d'observer et interagir à la ferme PerrineKope

Welcome to the first chapter of our journey at PerrineKope Farm.

Our tale begins when we first set foot on what was once an abandoned piece of land, a canvas awaiting transformation through mindful observation and nature's whispers.

🔍 Observation: Laying the Foundations for Renewal

Our first encounter with the land was a profound lesson in listening and observing. Instead of a thriving landscape, what caught our attention were the silent sentinels of the past—abandoned buildings in various states of decay and a piece of land overgrown with bushes. Our immediate priority was to create a haven for the farmers who would breathe new life into this land. We scrutinized the way these structures had withstood the test of time, their location, and their layout across the farm; it was about envisioning a space where people and nature could coexist harmoniously once again.

Observation is the cornerstone of permaculture. It involves immersing oneself in the environment to understand its unique characteristics and needs. For us, it meant seeing beyond the dilapidation and recognizing the potential for renewal. This initial step set the stage for all subsequent actions, grounding them in a deep understanding of the land's history and possibilities.

🛠 Adaptation and Innovation

Inspired by what the land offered, we began to rebuild. The walls of clay embraced  stones we found on our land, generously given by rocky grounds . This fusion of natural elements was a token to the farm's inherent resources, a step towards sustainability. By utilizing what was already available, we minimized waste and honored the land's legacy.

Adaptation and innovation are critical in permaculture. They involve taking the insights gained from observation and applying them creatively. In our case, it meant reimagining the existing structures and integrating new materials in a way that respected both the past and the future. This approach not only conserved resources but also forged a stronger connection between the farm and its stewards.

🌧 Learning from Nature's Challenges

Our journey, however, was not without its trials. The initial excitement of using local straw for roofing, a nod to traditional practices, soon met the reality of the rainy season. Despite our efforts, the straw succumbed to the pouring rain, a clear message from nature that our approach needed refinement.

Nature is a relentless teacher. Through its challenges, it offers valuable lessons that can lead to more resilient and sustainable practices. Our experience with the straw roofs underscored the importance of continuous learning and adaptation. It reminded us that sustainability is not a static goal but a dynamic process of constant improvement.

🔄 Iteration and Improvement

Refusing to be disheartened, we turned this setback into a learning opportunity. We sourced straw from the north of Togo, renowned for its durability, and enlisted craftsmen skilled in the art of tight weaving. Their expertise transformed our roofs into resilient shields against the elements, marrying local wisdom with practical observation.

Iteration and improvement are essential principles in permaculture. They emphasize the need for ongoing refinement based on feedback from the environment. Our revised approach to roofing highlighted the value of combining local knowledge with true craftmanship further north, resulting in solutions that are both effective and sustainable.

📸 Capturing Our Journey

A learning diary of our ongoing dialogue with nature and culture where observation and interaction provide us with costly yet powerful and beneficial lessons. Our journey at PerrineKope Farm is a testament to the transformative power of these principles. Each challenge and success is documented as part of a living narrative that continues to evolve.

Documenting our journey serves multiple purposes. It helps us track our progress, reflect on our learnings, and share our experiences with a broader community. This transparency fosters a culture of collective growth and inspires others to embark on their own paths of sustainable development.

📩 Connect and Learn More 💡

If this story resonates with you and you're curious about how this Permaculture principle can be translated into a thriving and sustainable farming modele in Africa to combat climate change and into a specific model for your business, please don't hesitate to get in touch